Advanced functionality, flexible system

Södra Cell Värö is doubling in size. Luckily, it has a control system that can expand with the plant.

Södra Cell Värö is the pulp mill that is currently going through an expansion unlike anything ever seen before in the Swedish paper industry. In order to meet the growing global demand for primarily soft paper – toilet paper, paper towels, napkins, etc. – the Södra Cell forestry group decided in 2014 to invest more than SEK 4 billion(!) into the mill. And now this work is in full swing out on the Värö peninsula in Halland, Sweden.

When adapting its automation to the expansion, Södra Cell Värö opted to continue to develop its long cooperation with ABB, in part because the operators were already very knowledgeable about how the systems work and there was already an established warehouse with reserve parts.

ABB met these new needs by scaling up the systems that were already in place in the plant. The 800xA control system is the hub that controls and coordinates all of the processes in the plant. It is a global system, which means that all of the information the operators need is gathered in one place and is accessible from anywhere in the plant. It is the heart of the plant.

“It is important to emphasize that the system was constructed in such a manner as to facilitate expansion,” says Hans Stenberg, Account Manager at ABB’s Automation Department. “Even though the plant will be expanded to almost twice its size, the system is able to match this. If it had not been able to handle the expansion, we would have needed two separate systems, which would have immediately made things more complex and demanding from a pure maintenance point of view.”

ABB is also delivering a large part of the automation, including the 85 MVA power transformer and 23 Resibloc distribution transformers. The mill will also use ABB’s frequency converter, which automatically and continuously adapts the rotation of the motor in order to achieve the best possible effect as energy-efficiently as possible.

“The current system belongs to the same system family that we have had since the 1980s,” says Hans Stenberg. “For ABB, it is very important for old and new functions to exist side-by-side. The same thought process is applied now, i.e. creating a system that is possible to expand in the future.”

Text: Johan Martinson

In the future, (almost) everything will be made from paper. Five signs that a cellulose revolution is imminent.


Paper bottles

The era of the PET bottles may be reaching its end given that a future competitor is “the green fiber bottle”. This experimental container for liquid is made entirely from cellulose, which quite simply decays if left in nature. The company behind this bottle is Danish EcoXpak, which is also developing paper beer bottles for Carlsberg.

Paper batteries

Researchers at Linköping University have developed what they call “power paper”, which is a type of paper made from nano-cellulose and a conductive polymer and has an “outstanding” capacity for storing energy. It is also supposed to be flexible like paper, take only seconds to charge and be completely free from dangerous chemicals.

Paper furniture

Sometimes the future really is right around the corner. In the spring of 2017, IKEA will introduce a series of furniture, including sofas, coffee tables and book shelves, that is made from paper pulp, reports the technology blog, Gizmodo. The series will also apparently be inexpensive as well, even compared to IKEA’s other products.

Paper bicycle helmets

Several prototypes for paper bicycle helmets have been developed in recent years. In London, for example, a model has been developed to use with the city’s rental “City Bikes”. It is made from recycled newspaper and meets all safety requirements, believe it or not.

Paper clothing

To be completely honest, it should be said that clothing has been being made from paper for some time, but it has only recently become possible to make thread from cellulose instead of water-intensive cotton. This means that paper clothing is now starting to feel like textile clothing, and thus becoming a serious competitor.

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